2/5/2011-A prophecy . . . that misread could have been

Now that I have really scrutinized the rules and reflected on how the players use Force Points, I have to say that I am becoming dismayed at my original assumption that; Force Points were supposed to make the game feel more Force Like; within the rules there is no stated intent for that.  Sure, there are fluff statements that describe the mechanics within the Star Wars setting; but there is nothing designed to make Force Points uniquely Star Wars.  An example of a game mechanic that; not only fits a setting, but also, is uniquely just for that setting, would be the “sanity” mechanic in Chaosium’s game Call of Cthulhu.  Call of Cthulhu game treats “sanity” as its own hit points, take a big hit and you gain phobias and if you lose all your sanity points, well you are naturally insane.    This reflects H.P. Lovecraft’s stories where the human mind was frail against the horrific and bazar realities of the universe.  There is no reason to include this system in any other game setting, it would be inappropriate for Star Wars or Lord of the Rings.   Unfortunately, Force Points do not do this.  Force Points are a resource that acts like energy fueling Force abilities and others.  The abilities are what give the feeling of the Force, the Force Points are a resource mechanic to balance and limit those abilities.  You can make the abilities into spells and use Mana Points as resource mechanics, this is easily generalized.  

So, I feel pretty safe to say that Force Points fail to provide any real sense of Star Wars or the Force.  This is a disappointment, because I feel that role-playing game systems are meant to encourage an emotional response.  When using a pre-established setting, then that emotional response is expected to mimic some of the same responses as that setting.  Although Wizards of the Coast drapes the D20 system with Star Wars Saga terminology, this is just another game mechanic used to enforce balance among the players. 

Which leads me somewhat back to the original topic: If this is a game mechanic that simply provides bonuses, why are the players denouncing them; rather than, just simply capitalizing on these granted bonuses?


Explore posts in the same categories: Gamemaster, Star Wars Saga Edition, Table Top RPG

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